The greatest 18-second video ever … 12K Temple students singing T for Temple U.
They are going to honor former Temple football coach Wayne Hardin on Saturday for his induction into the College Football Hall of Fame. The players will be wearing the same uniforms, and hopefully helmets, that the Owls wore when Temple seemingly won all the time.
Coach said a lot of interesting things to me over the years, but maybe the most interesting had to do with Temple attendance.
“If you have just Temple people supporting Temple, you’d have no attendance problem,” he said. “Between the students and alumni and employees, you have enough people to fill the stadium.”
That makes sense.
So how many people will be there when Temple makes its home debut in the American Athletic Conference?
I’m not good at a lot of things, but this unfortunately is one of them.
Unless I’m pleasantly surprised about Temple attendance, which is rarely.
The problem is two-fold: Students and alumni.
Students now have little excuse. There are about 14,000 living on campus. Plenty of free buses are available if they can’t get a ride and there is a subway stop out the front door of their dorm that ends right at the stadium. So they can even fall asleep on the subway and not fear they’ll miss their stop.
Matt Rhule, more than any Temple coach
I’ve ever seen, has done his level
best to reverse it. He’s given spirit
pep talks in every dorm, including
the new Morgan Hall. He’s even had
the football players help the kids
move in at every dorm everywhere.
I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s there
at 7 a.m. with a bullhorn and physically
dragging kids out of their beds and onto
the subway. That might be what it takes
There was a lot of great student momentum two years ago. Over 10,000 students attended the Villanova game and made a lot of noise (see video above). Then there was the Penn State game and there were 14,000 students making more noise. To me, there should be 14,000 students at every game (10K of the 14K living on campus and 4K of the remaining 25K commuters is not too much to ask). Maybe that’s just me, though. I haven’t missed a home game in 30 years and even that was job-related.
Last year, though, was another story.
The first home game against Maryland there were only about 2,000 students.
It was worse against Rutgers, despite the Owls taking a 2-0 Big East record into the game. Maybe 1,000 students attended.
Don’t exactly know what happened there, but it’s not a good trend.
Matt Rhule, more than any Temple coach I’ve ever seen, has done his level best to reverse it. He’s given spirit pep talks in every dorm, including the new Morgan Hall. He’s even had the football players help the kids move in at every dorm everywhere. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s there at 7 a.m. with a bullhorn and physically dragging kids out of their beds and onto the subway. That might be what it takes.
Temple people supporting Temple.
There are 139,000 alumni living within one hour’s drive of Lincoln Financial Field. Asking for at least 10 percent of them to attend is not too much to ask.
Way too many alumni, though, sit at home and watch the games on TV (Temple is a TV powerhouse; when the games are on local TV, the Owls outdraws other college games on a regular basis, so the evidence of coach-potato-itis is there).
Yet we have one grad who owns a bar down the shore who didn’t attend the Eagle Bank Bowl, despite it being the first bowl the school played in for 30 years. The Atlantic City press did a story on him. He and his bartender were just about the only people in the bar watching the game. You think he could have let the bartender run things for one day and made the trip to D.C.? You think? Then there was another Temple person who missed that game because it was “too cold.” Get that man a coat and some mittens, get the other guy to take a day off from work and get the coach potato alumni off the couches and into the stadium and the attendance “problem” is solved.
There you have it, a 30K baseline at every Temple game. At least. Then you can build it up from there.
Temple people supporting Temple. Maybe someday. Maybe Saturday.
These girls have caught Temple Smallpox. It’s the best kind.
Tomorrow: That lost bag of tricks